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Projects Updates for Zero Waste Gameday Challenge Fall 2014

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  1. Update from Bart Bartels

    From: Bartels, Bart A
    Sent: Wednesday, October 22, 2014 10:43 AM
    To: Busboom, Bobbi R; Stalcup, Holly M; Conlon, Terence F; Willis, Leonard; Ensign, Jason W; Marley, Elizabeth K; Brown, Kent William; Swanson, Bradley K; Houser, Barry L; Knox, Timothy A; Aubrey, Dawn
    Cc: Pai, Shantanu Santosh
    Subject: Game Day Recycling Challenge Update

    Hi All,

    Much is happening this week to prepare for this weekend’s game so I thought I would send out an update to keep everyone on the same page.  If you have any thoughts or concerns regarding the following activities, please let me know.

    1.        Yesterday Shantanu and I worked with volunteers to prepare the stadium for this weekend’s Game Day Recycling Challenge.  The following was accomplished:

    a.       Single trash bins were moved into 3-bin stations that include landfill, compost, and recycling.  Each station was set up with new signage and appropriate liners.  The stations were set up on the ground and fifth floors on the east and west sides of the stadium.  Stations were also set up in the Horseshoe. 

    b.      Coca Cola dropped off 15 recycling bins yesterday.  Nine white coke bins with black tops were disbursed to areas of need on the ground floor and in the horseshoe.  Six black Coke recycling bottles will be used in the preferred seating areas. 

    c.       Slim Jim recycling and waste bins have been dropped off in the pantry areas on the preferred seating floors but not yet set up.

    2.       Terry Conlon has been helpful in changing out some of the food service products for the game to compostable materials.  His group will be serving coffee in compostable cups with compostable lids.  They will also be serving most hotdogs “made to order” so there won’t be a need to place them in foil/paper wrappers but instead serving the items in compostable boats.  Paper plates are being used instead of plastic and compostable forks have been purchased.  He was not able to find an acceptable product to replace the nacho or pretzel trays so those will still go to landfill but thanks for all the effort you put into this.    

    3.       Brad Swanson has agreed to include a mention about the event in the pregame script.  Thanks Brad.

    4.       Block I will be doing a “card trick” to raise awareness about the recycling competition.

    5.       Jason and Beth have been working with us to provide “back of the house” sorting in the premium seating areas.  This will enable catchment of recyclable and compostable materials in the club areas that have limited space.  It will also enable composting all the food waste from the Friday night reception dinner.  That is reason for the slim Jim bins in the pantries.  Great ideas.  Thanks for that.

    6.       Barry is working with band to march into a recycling logo at half-time.  How cool is that!  Thanks Barry.

    Still to do:

    1.        We will stop over on Friday at 10am to finish setting up and make any needed adjustments.  This includes:

    a.       Set up stations in the student section and adjoining area.

    b.      Set up stations in the pantry areas including proper liners.

    c.       The composting roll-off will be delivered.  We will add signage.

    d.      Restrooms in the preferred seating areas will be supplied with compost capabilities.  Each stainless steel bin will be supplied with a small sign the reads “Paper Towels for compost”.  The bins will also be supplied with compostable bags. 

    e.      The third floor will be set up with signage on the bins and recycling bins. 

    2.       On game day about 150 volunteers will arrive at the Varsity entrance.  We will have staff on hand to check them in, provide wrist bands, lanyards, (vests if available) and give directions to their stations.  That day we will also have volunteers on hand to provide breaks and address any issues that might arise.  We have 4 hand held radios for us to communicate.  We will avoid using and channels already being used. 

    3.       During the game, the volunteers will attend each station, offering assistance to any fans that look like they need it.  I have directed all involved to avoid confrontation and that some people may not want to recycle.  Accept that and move on to those that want help.

    4.       After the game the volunteers will scan the stadium and pick out all recyclable and compostable materials.  Landfill materials will be left for the facilities staff collect as usual. 

    5.       All materials from the roll-offs will be collected on Sunday and weighed.  Those results will be posted on the Game Day Recycling Challenge website and compared to the other Big Ten teams. 

    A huge thank you goes out to all of you for enabling this to happen.  Please forward this email to anyone that should be informed about the event.  What an awesome opportunity to do great things.  As always, please contact me with any concerns or corrections.



  2. press release about zero waste game day





    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                     Oct. 1, 2014

    For more information contact

    Jim Dexter, Communications Coordinator (217) 244-3290





    Illinois Moves to a More Sustainable Future at Its First Gameday Recycling Challenge 


    CHAMPAIGN, IL – This year’s University of Illinois Homecoming game against the Minnesota Golden Gophers is about more than Orange and Blue – it is also about Green.  For the first time, various campus and community partners are working together to raise awareness and have a positive lasting impact at the inaugural Zero-Waste Football Game.  Hundreds of volunteers from all over the Urbana-Champaign community will assist the thousands of spectators in reducing waste – from the money spent sending materials to landfill to the volume of materials that impact our water, air, and soil.

    “As our students, staff, faculty, and alumni gather at Homecoming, this game is a fantastic opportunity to get everyone involved in making a difference.  A recycling competition is a fun way for all to participate and in the end, know what they have accomplished.”” said Bart Bartels, sustainability outreach specialist for the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC), a division of the Prairie Research Institute at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, who is coordinating this effort. “This is our first step to move Illinois to the top of the recycling competition’s leaderboard.”

    As our team takes the field and faces a fierce opponent, those involved in the Zero-Waste event face stiff competition from our Big 10 rivals, as this even is part of a National Competition divided up by conference and division.  Last year, Ohio State won the Big Ten challenge by piling up only 10 points (diverting 90 percent of their waste for recycling or composing).  Our Homecoming opponents, the Gophers, scored a 17 (an 83 percent diversion rate).  “While we always want to beat our Big Ten opponents, this year also serves as a baseline.  We will assess where we are and how to improve going forward,” Bartels said.

    Leading this cooperative initiative are ISTC, the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics, Facilities & Services, and the Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment.  They hope to encourage more sustainable recycling practices across the community.  Anyone who is interested in getting involved is welcome to join in the efforts.  To volunteer for the event, sign up at: We are looking forward to having a large student involvement in order to make this event a success.

    Nationwide, the Game Day Recycling Challenge is a partnership of the College and University Recycling Coalition (CURC), RecycleMania and Keep America Beautiful (KAB), and is supported by EPA’s WasteWise program.

    Also do your part as a fan by liking the Fighting Illini Gameday Recycling Challenge Facebook page: https://

    For more information, contact Bart Bartels at


    10114                                                                                -30-



  3. August 2014 SSLC Meeting notes

    iSEE leaders provided an introduction to the SSLC

    Six Objectives: Facilitate communication, facilitate collaboration, provide a forum for student leaders to voice their opinions to iSEE and thereby to the campus administration, help identify students who can serve on iSEE working groups or advisory groups, help identify potential interns, encourage more awareness about sustainability among student body

    Unofficial objective: Create political will/pressure to implement sustainability initiatives

    Topics covered:

    • 2010 iCAP progress toward 2015 objectives
    • iSEE Congress
    • Zero Waste Game Day
    • SSLC organizational structure
    Attached Files: 
  4. Game Day Facebook page live

    The Facebook page for the Game Day Recycling Challenge has been launched.  For the October 25th homecoming game we will be setting up 3 bin stations throughout the stadium for recycling, compost, and landfill.  All collected weights will be reported to the Game Day website for the national competition.  More details to follow.

    Here is the Facebook Page:

    Here is the site for the Game Day Challenge:

  5. Game Day Recycling Challenge

    The University is participating in its first Game Day Recycling Challenge at the October 25th homecoming game against the University of Minnesota.  For the event the usual landfill bins will be replaced with 3-bin stations to separate landfill, recycling, and compost.  The materials collected will be weighed, the diversion rate calculated, and then entered into a friendly national competition.  To volunteer for this event, please email Bart Bartels at  

  6. Thanks to DIA

    Mr. Willis,

    I just want to thank you and the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics for the opportunity to compete in the Gameday Recycling Challenge.  As we discussed, we are committed to reducing environmental impact from the October 25th  game against Minnesota.  What a great way to finish Campus Sustainability Week!

    As I mentioned, the event will be take place in the stadium and it is my responsibility to recruit volunteers, set up 3 bin stations, add signage, and replace everything by Sunday afternoon.   Here is a link to the website that I mentioned.

    I will immediately begin planning out the details. 

    Thanks again,

    Bart Bartels

    Zero Waste Coordinator